Your wedding doesn’t need to have a Royal Wedding price tag to be “Meghan and Harry” memorable.

Setting a budget can be one of the most difficult aspects of planning a wedding.  If flipping through wedding magazines has you convinced a beautiful wedding must cost the equivalent of a down payment on a house, then you need to read this. We’ve compiled a few tips to help you say “I Don’t” to debt.

The key to keeping costs down may seem pretty obvious, yet can be difficult for many couples. Set a budget. A real budget. Be reasonable, and be honest with yourself. Being unrealistic or exceeding your budget will leave you in wedding debt after the big day. Everyone wants a memorable wedding, but don’t start your lives together with unnecessary debt.  These tips will help give you a realistic idea of how to set a wedding budget that won’t rival the “Kardashian-West” wedding.

The Venue

Venue is a big deal. It is also a major cost.

When choosing your venue, consider doing something unexpected. Most of the popular venues in big cities will cost you a big part of your budget, and often require separate ceremony and reception spaces. Do you have a family member with a beautiful backyard? Or a friend who owns a restaurant you could rent for a discounted rate? We love this renovated cathedral in Millbrook, Ontario. It is located less than 2 hours from Toronto. The cathedral lends a classical elegant beauty, while providing enough space for ceremony and reception to take place all together.

The Design

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.

Design your wedding with intentional and minimalistic elements. Allow each piece to stand out and add to the overall design, without being overwhelmed.

A major design cost is often the florals. Work with your floral designer to choose flowers and greenery that is cost effective while maintaining the overall aesthetic you want. Allow your florals to be an accent to your other design elements, rather than basing your entire design around them. A simple bouquet of greenery lends a natural, whimsical aesthetic to your overall look while keeping costs low.

The Dress

Say yes to the dress. Say no to the crazy price tag.

Very few people can tell the difference between a custom made designer gown, and a well altered off-the-rack dress. Working with a talented seamstress allows you to take a less costly gown and make it look as if it were made just for you. Another option is to have a vintage dress altered to suit your style and needs. Your Mothers’ dress can look vintage-chic without looking out dated with some minor adjustments.

The Cake

You have to go for a tasting.

Deal with the cake after all decisions about dress style and reception décor have been made. These elements can serve as a blueprint for the design and structure of your wedding cake. Choose a cake that’s compatible with the style of the venue, the season, your gown, the flower arrangements or the menu. If you want colorful accents (such as sugar flowers or icing ribbons), give your baker fabric swatches. The cake should be part of the wedding, not a glaring sideshow.


The Theme

Delve a little deeper.

When it comes to choosing a wedding theme that’s unique and personal, just treading the water won’t do you any good. You need to get into the details. If you want to have a vintage-themed wedding, for instance, decide on a specific period, like the 1920s or 1960s. If you like rustic decorations, which kind of rustic are you talking about? The elegant or rugged kind? With a clear brief, it will be easier for vendors to understand your vision. If your theme is too general, different vendors might have different interpretations, and the results may not look harmonious together.


The Flowers

Know your own mind.

Before you get too excited about the flowers you’ve fallen in love with, you need to do the maths. Some floral arrangements may simply be a little unrealistic in terms of price so it’s a good idea to work out how much you have to spend on the flowers before you start looking. Keep your spending under control by using more expensive flowers sparingly.



Style Director, Planner, Designer and Floral’s – by Francesca, xo | Wedding Cake  and Dessert Bar – Sweet Couture Cakes by Adele | Venue – Millbrook Cathedral |Vintage Candelabra’s – Southern Charm Vintage Rentals | Rentals: Chairs, tables, linens, dinnerware, couches, bar table – Perfect Party Rentals | Wedding Dress – One Love One Dream Bridal | Makeup – Cassandra Campbell Beauty | Hair – Priceless Beauty | Officiant – Rev. Barb Takeda | Videographer – RC2Films | Photography – Jill Hamilton Photography | MODELS | Andraes Schettini, Amanda Wagg |

XO from RC2 Films on Vimeo.


When we design weddings for the modern bride, here’s what we do:

  • bouquets
  • floral and greenery crowns
  • table settings design
  • centerpieces
  • boutonnieres
  • corsages
  • flower wands
  • flower baskets
  • take the month you are getting married into account
  • backdrops
  • arbours/chuppah’s
  • venue views, interior bones
  • rentals ie. chairs, linens, cutlery, chargers, linens
  • select beautiful candles
  • create your dream wedding
  • make sure your day is seamless and memorable

Click here for our wedding designs and floral’s questionnaire.



  • full wedding planning
  • partial wedding planning
  • month of coordination
  • day of coordination

Click here for our planning services questionnaire.


We look forward to working with you and your families to plan your perfect wedding day. After all, at by Francesca, xo Weddings and Events, your are FAMILY. much love…xo


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